UEFA.com works better on other browsers
For the best possible experience, we recommend using Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge.

EURO 2016 opener: France v Romania preview

"The less the occasion weighs on the players, the better," said Didier Deschamps ahead of France's UEFA EURO 2016 opener against Romania. Our preview has all you need to know.

France coach Didier Deschamps addresses his team during training on Thursday
France coach Didier Deschamps addresses his team during training on Thursday ©Getty Images
  • Hosts France take on Romania in opening game of UEFA EURO 2016
  • Didier Deschamps: "This should set the tone for the whole tournament"
  • Anghel Iordănescu: "We are up against one of the best teams"
  • Teams met on 10 June at EURO '96 – 20 years to the day before this encounter
  • Follow our team reporters for the inside track: @UEFAcomDavidC and @UEFAcomPaulDZ 

Possible line-ups

France: Lloris; Sagna, Rami, Koscielny, Évra; Pogba, Kanté, Matuidi; Griezmann, Giroud, Payet.

Romania: Tătăruşanu; Săpunaru, Chiricheş, Grigore, Raţ; Hoban, Pintilii; Popa, Stanciu, Stancu; Keșerü.
: Filip (ankle)

Coach quotes
Didier Deschamps, France coach

The less the occasion weighs on the players, the better. We have been preparing for 10 June for two years. It's important to be back in competition football. Our last official game was the quarter-final against Germany at the World Cup [in 2014]. The others have all been friendlies. The setting is the Stade de France – the opening game – so it is certainly special. This should set the tone for the whole tournament.

Obviously we're playing in France, but the Romanian team we're up against will not roll over and they will give their best to achieve a good result. If they want to win this match, they can't just defend. This team know how to defend but it's not the only thing they're good at. I watched their most recent games and they are good going forward. I am expecting them to come with the intention of upsetting us, so it will be an interesting battle over the 90 minutes.

France midfielder Paul Pogba in training on Thursday evening
France midfielder Paul Pogba in training on Thursday evening©AFP/Getty Images

Anghel Iordănescu, Romania coach
This game marks the start of a great competition, the greatest on our continent, the European Championship. We are up against one of the best teams in the tournament, among the favourites. I hope and believe our players will do their best to show everybody that we have a good team, a worthy team capable of putting in a good performance. The objective is to qualify, to get through the group, and make a very good impression at the same time.

UEFA.com team reporters
David Crossan, France (@UEFAcomDavidC)
The opening match is France's chance to lay down a marker and prove they are worthy of the favourites' tag that is being bandied about increasingly frequently. Les Bleus are star-studded in midfield and attack, so Romania will have to go some to stop the likes of Antoine Griezmann, Paul Pogba and the in-form duo of Dimitri Payet and Olivier Giroud. The hosts' defence remains a cause for concern, so France's games should prove exciting for neutral observers.

Paul-Daniel Zaharia, Romania (@UEFAcomPaulDZ)
Napoleon believed that even the most modest combatants had potential within, saying: "Every soldier carries a marshal's baton in his pack." It is useful advice for Romania as they open a major tournament for the first time. A side without big stars, they are up against the hosts and one of the tournament favourites. However, this is a unique opportunity to show the world what they can do. The odds are against them, but what would football be without surprises?

Romania are put through their paces
Romania are put through their paces©AFP/Getty Images

Form guide (all competitions, most recent first)

Did you know?
Deschamps was in the France midfield, and Iordănescu in his first spell as Romania coach, when the teams faced off at EURO '96. Find out more in our extensive match background.

Follow the game on social media (#FRAROU)
@UEFAEURO on Twitter
UEFA EURO on Facebook
UEFA EURO on Instagram